Managing social media while on vacation

How Social Media Managers Can Go On Vacation (No, Really!)

As a busy social media manager, you’re probably used to putting in long hours, which is why taking a break to reset every once in a while is crucial. A summer vacation can help lower your stress levels, recharge your brain, and boost your creativity.

But since you’ve put so much effort into growing and managing your social media accounts, you’ll want to make sure they don’t lose momentum just because you’re busy having mimosas for breakfast at the swim-up bar.

Luckily, there are quick and easy ways you can prepare to partially check out, and ensure you maintain your share of voice and keep your communities engaged throughout your well-deserved summer down time.

Prepare and schedule content

Before you leave, try to pull together a volume of content comparable to your normal publishing volume—you don’t want to let down followers who are still stuck at their desks. Since you won’t be available to publish time-sensitive posts or reply to real-time events, consider a mix evergreen posts and curated content.

Although we recommend using a social content calendar on a regular basis, creating one for the posts that will be published while you’re away is especially important. Knowing that you’ve got relevant content going out at regular intervals should help ease the separation anxiety of unplugging yourself from your social media accounts for a while.

Once you’ve developed your content calendar, you can then schedule these posts across your social networks through your Hootsuite dashboard. If you’re going to be away for an extended period of time, Hootsuite’s bulk scheduler allows you to schedule up to 350 messages at one time.

Despite how hard you try to unplug completely, the reality is that you may need to step in and manage your social accounts at some point while you’re gone. Check in on your communities and—if need be—easily view, edit, or delete any of your scheduled messages before they’re published using the Hootsuite mobile app.

Out of ideas? Let us help

If you’ve already got vacation brain (which is a very real affliction) and you’re struggling to come up with content ideas, UpContent (available in the Hootsuite App Directory) is your new best friend.

UpContent is a content discovery tool that helps you find quality content to share with your followers.

Its Query Builder function allows you to search for what you’re looking for (and filter out the stuff that you don’t want). Once you’ve entered a search, you can sort results by things like relevance, recency, influence, and shareability. You can also read the full text of articles from within your Hootsuite dashboard and easily schedule interesting content to share.


Prepare the team

If you’re lucky enough to have team members who can help out while you’re away, assign each member to perform a specific social role. Don’t expect a pinch-hitter to completely fill your shoes while still juggling their other duties. Since you’ve prepared and scheduled lots of content in advance, your team can handle real-time actions like replying, commenting, and retweeting so that your community is still getting the two-way communication and engagement they’re accustomed to.

You can easily share access to social accounts and collaborate with your team members while still maintaining control of the permissions using Hootsuite Teams. This will allow you to leave someone in charge without giving them the keys to the whole kingdom.

Don’t forget about the little things

You’ve got everything you need to prepare for a vacation away from your social media accounts and the tools to manage them all on mobile if necessary, but don’t let some of these little things slip your mind before you make a run for it:

  • Set your out-of-office reply in your email: It may seem like a small detail, but  there’s nothing worse than being convinced someone is ignoring you when they’re really just on vacation. People need to know that you’re gone, when you’ll be back, and who they can contact in your absence with any time-sensitive questions or issues.
  • Make sure there’s Wi-Fi at your destination: You now have all the apps you need to effectively manage social media from your mobile device, but without easily accessible Wi-Fi, you risk blowing through all your data (and then some) and coming home to a cell phone bill so high it has a comma in it. You’ve been warned.
  • Pack your cell phone and laptop chargers: Do this. Do this right now.

By preparing content in advance, using a content calendar to stay organized, and managing what you need to via mobile, there’s no reason even the busiest social media manager can’t take some time off this summer while staying ahead of the game.